Sunday, January 26, 2020

Book Review: 'I Liked My Life' by Abby Fabiaschi

Beautiful new author Abby Fabiaschi graduated from The Taft School, a private, coeducational school located in Watertown, Connecticut in 1998 and Babson College, a private business school in Wellesley, Massachusetts in 2002, and after putting in her time climbing the corporate ladder in high Technology she resigned her executive post to become a writer. Abby is a committed human rights advocate and Board Chair for Her Future Coalition, an international nonprofit with a unique prosperity model that uplifts victims from human trafficking and extreme abuse. She and her family divide their time between West Hartford, Connecticut, and Park City, Utah. Difficult as it may be to believe, I LIKED MY LIFE is her debut novel!
On Abby website she offers a fin summary of her novel: ‘If you live your life for other people, can you truly be happy? And what becomes of those you served once you’re gone? Madeline Starling was a seemingly devoted wife and mother until her death is deemed a suicide. While her husband Brady fails to balance his high-profile career with the role of single parenthood thrust upon him, and their teenage daughter Eve grapples to carry on despite the guilt and anger inherent in grieving a parent’s intentional death, Madeline struggles to make things right for the family she left behind. The result is an achingly beautiful portrait of a father and daughter trying to redefine their understanding of family and a striking depiction of the transcendent power of unconditional love.’

With prose reminiscent of Alice Sebold’s eloquent ‘The Lovely Bones’ Abby opens her book with a mystery the soon unravels – the main character Maddy, a devoted stay-at-home wife and mother, host of excellent parties, giver of thoughtful gifts, and bestower of a searingly perceptive piece of advice or two, is dead, having apparently committed suicide, is looking at her past life from the beyond. The story opens like a scroll as Maddy sets about trying to replace herself with the perfect wife and mother for the family she has left. Rory comes into the picture and is groomed as a perfect ‘new Maddy’ and the manner in which Abby interlocks the spiritual with the reality of loss and caring for the happy welfare of her prior family makes for one the more profoundly touching novels in some time. Mixing gentle humor with elements of the contemporary now makes this a book that is both a fine look at family relationships, caring, love, and joy.

Abby Fabiaschi is clearly a gifted new writer who seems assuredly in place for a very successful artistic career. Highly Recommended. Grady Harp, February 17
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.